Sub-Sahara Mining & Industrial Journal
Mining News

Multiple mining firms in Masisi are refusing to purchase minerals sourced from regions under the control of the Rwandan military.

In the Masisi region of North Kivu, mining companies’ economic operators have opted to boycott purchasing mining products from areas believed to be under the control of M23 rebels, allegedly backed by the Rwandan army. Their decision stems from a commitment to uphold international mineral sourcing standards in conflict zones.

Yvette Mwanza, the provincial president of the North Kivu Chamber of Mines, articulated this stance, stating, “Currently, we abstain from acquiring minerals sourced from Masisi. Instead, we look to Walikale and Lubero due to the heightened conflict risk. No responsible consumer can condone minerals originating from Masisi.”

Conversely, Justin Ndayishimiye, the elected representative of Masisi and coordinator of the Cooperative of Artisanal Miners (COOPERAMA), noted that the boycott hasn’t halted mining operations in rebel-held territories. He highlighted the M23 rebels’ establishment of a mining minister in Rubaya and their continued exploitation of minerals in Masisi, which are then allegedly trafficked to Rwanda. These minerals are purportedly relabeled through Rwanda’s traceability service and sold as Rwandan-sourced.

Ndayishimiye urges the international community to intervene and curb Rwanda’s exploitation of Congo’s mineral resources. Notably, Rubaya’s coltan production accounts for 50% of the nation’s output and 80% of global reserves, as reported by Radio Okapi.

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